People in such regions have shown signs of early illness because of mental stress and hence they tend to have a shorter lifespan as compared to people living in societies having a lower economic inequality. Where there is a high economic inequality in the society, it is observed that more people of that society are diagnosed with mental imbalance (Arrow et al., 2000).
The economic inequality of a society directly affects how the people of that society perceive their well-being. In countries where majority of the income share is held by the top 1% of the society, people tend to have a lower sense of personal well-being and health. Even in the United States of America, a similar economic inequality prevails in the society. Hence, people are prone to poor health and have a lower sense of personal health and well-being. Also, in some states of the United States where the economic inequality is lower, people live a longer and happier life (De Vogli et al., 2005)
There is lesser mental stress and people are more constructive and progressive by nature. The stress gap between the rich and the poor are constantly increasing with rising economic inequality. The lower the position of the American workers on the economic ladder, the more physical labour they would have to exhibit in their job. Such jobs will ultimately contribute to higher stress among the workers. This stress would be both mental stress as well as physical stress. This would also lead to more medical bills for these workers. It has been generally observed that workers that are in highly demanding jobs physically also tend to typically retire earlier. It is even before they can claim full Social Security benefits. This is because the American workers are not eligible to claim full retirement benefits before age 66. This results to a trend that demonstrates full economic inequality among the senior citizens. in the study, it has been proved that there is a deep correlation between economic inequality and health and well-being of a person. These correlations depict that it is an evil prevalent in the society and should be eradicated as quickly as possible to make this world a better place to live in (Heathcote et al., 2010).
These health outcomes that include everything from infant mortality to life expectancy and obesity are correlated to economic inequality within a given population. The greater the economic inequality prevalent in the society or the country we live in, the more prevalent are the health diseases. Scientists who study the health of populations and they are called epidemiologists. These epidemiologists have highlighted the fact that inequality doesn’t necessarily mean just poverty. Rather, poverty and poor health are interlinked and go hand-in-hand. According to various epidemiological researches, high levels of economic inequality are responsible for negatively affecting the health of the people of the society. This is primarily because inequality reduces social cohesion, as studied by the researchers. This ultimately lead to more fear, increased stress and insecurity for everyone. Health experts and economists have found out through various studies that people who live in poorer societies tend to have a shorter lifespan (Montague, 1996).
But researchers also highlight an additional factor in explaining the life expectancy and this factor is extremely crucial and cannot be ignored. The factor considered here is the level of inequality in a society. People tend to be happier and more contented with their lives in nations with lower levels of inequality and hence they tend to live longer. This has been measured and proved measured by the Gini coefficient, which serves as a standard global benchmark (Wilson & Daly, 1997).